Weebly Review: We test "free & easy" Weebly
Websites for grown-ups, no technical skills required: that's Weebly's promise. We decided to do you a favor and take a closer look.
Weebly's well-organized interface makes it easy to see at a glance what it has to offer. Like Webnode, it has a series of menus across the top for easy access to its key features. A simple drag and drop is all it takes to add text, images or forms to your Weebly website as you can see in the video:
> Sign up for a free Weebly account yourself (link will open in a new window)
The website doesn't reveal too much about pricing. So here's the deal: the basic package is free, but will include a small Weebly ad in your website's footer.
Their paid plans consist of two tiers: Starter, which is priced at $3.29 and lets you fully customize your website's footer to remove the Weebly logo. It also gives you access to their premium support. The Pro plan is $6.63 per month and includes even more slick features like site search, header slideshows as well as video and audio players.
You get to the price list only after signing up for the free version, but an email address is all it takes to register. Note that you will have to pay extra for your own domain name, however. A .com domain will be USD $39.95 per year (with discounts available for longer terms).
Our Weebly rating in detail
|Ease of use||This is exactly how a website builder should be. There's no learning curve with Weebly, so you'll have your website up and running in no time.|
|Template choice and flexibility||They offer a great selection of flexible templates and if you're a pro you can even access the source code for further customization. A smartphone-friendly website will be generated automatically.|
|Advertisement-free||Yes||In the Pro version only. The free version has a small advertising link in the footer.|
|Languages||Currently available in English, French, Spanish, German, Italian and Chinese. Support available in English only. No special feature to create multilingual sites.|
|-Proper domain name (e.g. mysite.com)||Yes||You can buy a domain from Weebly, but it works out to be pretty expensive and they only offer .com, .net or .org domains. You can re-direct a domain you've bought elsewhere though.|
|- Depth of navigation||Unlimited. A drop-down menu is added to your navigation bar automatically.|
|- Widgets (small tools to add extra functionality)||Photo galleries, video and music players and more. We very much like the Button-Widget that let's you create call-to-action buttons easily.|
|- Monetization||Yes||Using banner ads for example. Note that Weebly will keep 50% of your AdSense revenue if you use their AdSense Widget. As a Pro user you can avoid this by adding your AdSense code through an HTML widget.|
|- e-Commerce||Simple store, but only accepts payments via PayPal or Google Checkout unfortunately. Weebly doesn't have an integrated order management system either. You can use Ecwid to add better e-commerce options.|
|- Search-engine optimization (SEO)||Title, meta and description tags are all customizable at page level, as are your images' ALT text. URL text is always created from the respective menu item. The use of headlines (H1, H2 etc.) is limited.|
|- Blog||Has all the standard features, e.g. comment moderation and trackbacks. Would be good to have the option to schedule blog posts for publication at a future date. Thanks to their mobile apps (iPhone and Android) you can even blog on the go.|
|- Visitor statistics||Weebly has its own tracking tool, or you can use Google Analytics.|
|- Contact form||Yes||Use drag and drop to create detailed contact forms or surveys.|
|- Password protection||Yes, in Pro plan||You can either protect the entire site or selected pages.|
|- Add HTML code||Yes||Allows you to add external widgets and other tools.|
|- Storage space||Unlimited||Individually, your files cannot exceed 10 MB each on the free plan, or 250 MB each on the Pro plan. But other than that, the sky's the limit!
No limits on bandwidth either. And you can even download your Weebly website and host it on your own web space.
|- Forums||Yes||Direct integration with Tal.ki, which makes adding forums a piece of cake.|
|Support||Email and Knowledge base||Tech support responded competently and quickly to our questions.|
|Fun factor||Weebly listens to their users and continuously improves the product. We also like their non-aggressive sales style.|
|Overall rating||One of the best website builders on the market. There's room for improvement in its store, but other than that, Weebly hits the spot.|
At first glance, the Weebly website seems like nothing special. But take a closer look and you'll discover an outstanding tool. It's simple, uncluttered and easy to use, and that's exactly what people with limited technical skills need when it comes to creating their own internet presence.
We think Weebly and Jimdo run neck and neck. Both tools serve the same market segment, and both are easy to use and work equally well. Jimdo gets bonus points for its online store and the included email account(s), while Weebly's strengths lie in its extremely flexible design options and integrated multimedia (for example, its video player).
Enough with theory: Try it out for yourself and see how you like it!
> Click here to try Weebly for free
02 May 2013 - New editor design and a price increase: Starter is now $4 (before $3.29) and Pro $8 (before $6.63)
13 Mar 2013 - We've added information about password protection.
08 Feb 2013 - New pricing plans: Starter and Pro plan.
17 Dec 2012 - New features: site search, header slideshows, custom footer and more. Our review.
03 May 2012 - Quite a few additions: an iPhone app, the Button Element and more template flexibility
17 Jan 2012 - Video review and video page added
22 Nov 2011 - We checked Weebly's server performance and it has done pretty well.
20 Jul 2011 - Review of Weebly's mobile website
17 Mar 2011 - General update
12 Jan 2010 - General update - support not reviewed at this time.
Last updated: 02 May 2013 | Robert Brandl
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